Terence S. Dermody, MD, has been named the Chair of the Department of Pediatrics at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and Physician-in-Chief and Scientific Director at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC). Dr. Dermody will officially begin in these new positions on June 1, 2016.
He joins Children’s Hospital from Vanderbilt University, where he is the Dorothy Overall Wells Professor of Pediatrics, Director of the Division of Pediatric Infectious Diseases and Director of the Medical Scientist Training Program at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine. He also is Professor of Pathology, Microbiology, and Immunology at Vanderbilt.
Viral Pathogenesis and Vaccine Development
Dr. Dermody is a virologist with interests in viral pathogenesis and vaccine development. He has focused mainly on reovirus, an important experimental model for studies of viral encephalitis in infants, and on chikungunya virus, an arthropod-borne virus that causes epidemics of febrile arthritis.
The work in Dr. Dermody’s laboratory has encompassed several interrelated themes, including the structural basis of viral attachment and cell entry; mechanisms of genome replication and packaging; patterns of cell signaling and gene expression occurring in response to viral infection; mechanisms of virus-induced apoptosis and its significance in the viral life cycle; and the role of viral receptor distribution and utilization in disease pathology. Currently, the lab is developing viral vectors for oncolytic and vaccine applications.
“I am honored to be able to join the team in Pittsburgh and be a part of this world-class pediatric facility dedicated to improving the lives of children,” said Dr. Dermody. “I am eager to begin and have the opportunity to work with the talented physicians and scientists at Children’s Hospital. I feel honored and humbled to have this opportunity.”
Dr. Dermody succeeds David H. Perlmutter, MD, who recently left Children’s to become Executive Vice Chancellor for Medical Affairs and Dean of Medicine at Washington University in St. Louis.
Dr. Dermody’s research is supported by grants from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the Lamb Foundation. He currently holds five NIH grants, and the NIH has continually funded his research since 1987. He is a past President of the American Society for Virology, past Chair of the AAMC GREAT Group MD/PhD Section Steering Committee, and current Chair of the Virology Division of the International Union of Microbiological Societies.
Dr. Dermody received his medical degree from Columbia University. He completed an internal medicine residency at Presbyterian Hospital in New York and fellowships in infectious diseases and molecular virology at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School. ■